- watching the weather
- watching the cricket
- watching out for summer migrant birds
Firstly, the weather. It's actually been raining this afternoon as is evidenced by the above picture. It hasn't rained properly in my part of the world for the last two months and everything, especially in my garden, is looking rather thirsty. The ground is looking like this:
Now I know that's no big deal if you're reading this in Adelaide or Texas but this is England in May.
Then there's Cricket, that strange pastime which usually causes the heavens to open. England have just recorded a remarkable victory, but that's not what I've ben thinking about. I've been thinking about village cricket, which bears as much relation to international cricket as a barn dance to the Bolshoi ballet.
I was watching a match on Parker's Piece in the centre of Cambridge. They'd obviously been watching a lot of first class matches on TV and were "trying to do things proper, like". At least, they all had white trousers and walked around clapping their hands like real cricketers. All rather different from the first game I ever saw on a cow pasture in Caldecote. Some of the men wore their work boots and the ball had to be frequently retrieved from the brook, having been deposited there by a red-faced farmer who may have lacked timing and technique but made up for it with brute strength. Or at Grantchester where the opening bowler had to be summoned from a lunchtime drinking session in the pub.
All that remains of Grantchester's team is the old pavilion, now used as an artist's studio, and the roller which was used to prepare the pitch.
And finally. Turtle Doves are in decline and you can spend a lot of time searching for them. Even if you can hear their gentle purring song it can still be difficult to catch sight of one. Or you can come home as I did this afternoon and see one walking about on the grass just outside the window. Thanks once again to my neighbour and his feeding station. I just hope he saw it too.